“My body is a projection of my consciousness.”
It is in the body that you live and experience life. It is in the body that healing takes place. If the body is encumbered with discomfort, it may be hard for the mind or spirit to feel wholeness or peace. When energy is able to flow thru the body-you will feel good and have energy. Every part of your physical body is connected to itself. The bones, joints, muscles, nervous system and organs and soft interact thru an all-connecting web called the fascia. Like a continuum of interconnected wrapping paper that is held together with soft pliant glue, fascia connects all layers and influences the flows of energy in the body. When fascia is constricted in one place, it may cause an issue in any number of places in the body that in a traditional sense, seem unconnected. There are 3 main approaches of working with the physical body that I utilize in my Whole Person approach to healing.
Fascial Stretching & Neuromuscular Techniques
Cupping & Gua Sha
Maya Abdominal Massage
There are many styles of massage therapy which all have therapeutic value. Because my background is in bodywork, the main style I will use will be based on what your body needs at the time. I will often begin a session with Shiatsu, which translates to “finger-pressure”. This is a method that employs compression in a rhythmic fashion along meridians. It is a deeply relaxing method of bodywork. It is also a method of evaluation for me to see where deeper constrictions may be in your body. When a larger relationship of tension is isolated, I may use one of several techniques to help unblock it.
Fascial Stretching and Neuromuscular techniques, which involve the holding of a tender, or “trigger” point and applying sustained pressure until the sensation of pain and tension decreases, is one method. Often before this strategy is used I may do some prep work with Swedish techniques that feel nurturing and prepares the body for deeper work.
Cupping & Gua Sha is another massage technique that can be helpful for more chronic, deep pain that hurts too much to receive massage. Both are present in many cultures and are more notably used for the common cold, coughs and fevers. Gua Sha is a simple, non abrasive scraping technique performed on the skins surface that brings blood flow to the area. It is helpful for the first sign of fever or cough. Cupping, the application of a glass or plastic jar ito provide suction to the tissues and underlying fascia is used to draw and remove blockages from the channels via the skin and muscles. Both are effective for resolving adhesions of the muscles and fascia and for treating more chronic bocks of energy at the muscle and tissue level. The unique combination of Gua Sha and cupping together in the treatment of chronic and stubborn pain patterns is something I have great success with.
Pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger (1932-2012). It is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of the physiological body system called the CranioSacral system – comprised of the membranes, bones and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. Treatment employs generally no greater than 5 grams of pressure, or about the weight of a nickel on bones and membranes to improve the functioning of the central nervous system.
CranioSacral therapy is effective for addressing the root cause of tensions and distortions in the body. When these are located or cleared during a treatment, patients may experience localized tissue responses and releases. One response is called therapeutic pulsing which feels like tapping, the release of heat or the desire to move or stretch a muscle or part of the body. It may also feel as if another distant area of the body is reacting to the release of tension in a local area.
Somato Emotional Integration
Soma, Somato, Somatic refers to the body. Sometimes before the body is able to release the physical tension a patient may recall a feeling or memory of a time or event that may have been involved with the energy block. When this happens it can be simply an insight as to the origin of the issues cause or a deeper opportunity to get in touch with an unresolved or charged emotional place. This is called a SER or Somato Emotional Release. During a Somato Emotional Release you may want to cry or express what you didn’t get to feel in the moment. This may provide the opportunity to do it a different way or re-frame or to simply feel fully what you couldn’t feel during your experience. During a session I will use constructive dialogue to help you connect deeper into the feeling or emotions in a safe way without recreating trauma or stress. Although this may occur spontaneously, I do not specifically force or look for an emotional response during a session. The most important facet of our work is integration and support of the energetic body after an awareness of stress release-thus I prefer to call it Somato Emotional Integration.
Maya Abdominal Massage
This is non-invasive, external, massage technique that guides internal abdominal organs into their proper position for optimum health and function. Maya massage improves organ function by releasing physical and emotional congestion from the abdomen. The patient and the practitioner receive insight as to the nature of the causes of imbalance. A self-care routine is taught and additional methods for the patient to implement at home are given. Patients are then guided as to what to expect as the techniques improve their conditions and improve other dimensions of health. Most women find it to be a very insightful treatment that changes their relationship and appreciation of their uterus, her cycles and overall health. Dr. Rosita Arvigo, DN developed these techniques, after apprenticing with Don Elijio Panti, the last of the Traditional Maya Shaman in Central America, where she has lived for over 30 years.